Croydon riot ringleader has sentence increased
A ringleader in the Croydon riots has had his sentenced nearly doubled today.
Adam Khan Ahmadzai, of Feltham, was jailed for four years in January, when he appeared at Inner London Crown Court after rampaging through Croydon during the disorder on August 8 last year.
The 20-year-old pleaded guilty to 10 offences on November 28 last year, including one count of violent disorder, three counts of burglary, four robberies and two counts of criminal damage.
But Attorney General Dominic Grieve referred the case to the Court of Appeal, on the basis the sentence imposed on Ahmadzai was unduly lenient.
Today, the Lord Chief Justice Lord Judge, sitting with Mr Justice Openshaw and Mr Justice Irwin, agreed and said his sentence should be increased to seven years.
The Attorney General, who presented the case, told the court Ahmadzai had committed an "extraordinary list of crimes".
Speaking later he said: "He led an attack on a police line, robbed a bus driver who he had forced to halt, armed himself and ransacked a shop, forcing the petrified owners to flee, only to rob them moments later in a hijack of their van.
"He repeatedly attacked and mugged a terrified man at a cash machine, acting as if pushing a gun into his neck; led a gang into a supermarket, looting and vandalising and finally directed his group into a betting shop, destroying a fruit machine and looting the office behind the counter.
"I'm very pleased the Court of Appeal has today quashed that sentenced and replaced it with one of seven years."
The decision was also welcomed by the Crown Prosecution Service.
CPS London Chief Crown Prosecutor, Alison Saunders, said: "We referred this case to the Attorney General as one that had attracted a sentence which was unduly lenient.
"I welcome the strong message that the Court of Appeal has now sent out as a result of this ruling.
"Adam Khan Ahmadzai was a ringleader during the riots in Croydon and his conviction for ten offences committed that night shows the extent of his criminality.
"His offences were amongst the most serious which CPS London has prosecuted in relation to the summer riots and this increased sentence reflects that."